The Cambodian people have endured a long journey of suffering since 1970. Now, the
Cambodian political parties are trying to rehabilitate by working together toward
peace and national reconciliation and democracy. This process was created by UNTAC
of the United Nations. The new constitution will be established by the Cambodian
constituent assembly within the next three months.
This is the most important event in recent Cambodian history. Therefore, the intellectual
Cambodians inside and outside of Cambodia must inform the constituent assembly about
the ideology which you desire for the destiny of Cambodia.
The constituent assembly will be interested in understanding the opinions of Cambodians
around the world so that they may create a constitution which represents the desires
of all Cambodian people.
Below are several important points which I desire the constituent assembly to consider
in creating a new constitution.
- To follow the national Buddhist ideology and the interests of Cambodians.
- To respect the human rights of the United Nations.
- To create a liberal democracy.
- To create three independent powers: a legislative body (congress senate) an executive
body (government), and a justice system (court of justice); each accountable to the
- To create a parliamentary regime.
- To legislate freedom of trade, media, etc.
- Regarding Buddhism
Buddhism could be declared the state religion as it was in the former constitution.
However, the Buddhist monks' administration, the religion power, must be separated
from governmental affairs. When Buddhist monks have the right to vote, they practice
politics instead of practicing the traditional monk's discipline of purity of mind.
Because of this, they lose the respect of the Buddhist people.
Finally, our Cambodian people have experienced many political regimes. Therefore,
they have the experience necessary to choose the best constitution and form of government
for Cambodia. I urge intellectual Cambodians to write their opinions and desires
for the future of Cambodia to the constituent assembly before the approval of the
constitution in mid-September.
- Venerable Hok Savann, Canada